With RYZEN 5 being out and about, I decided to pick up the least-expensive chip to see what it could do, especially once I constrain myself to a budget of under $800.
This means a mix of new and used components had to be used, and a pair of recycled components from other builds. That said, I did include purchase prices for all re-used parts when calculating my total.
This build is not intended to serve as a guide on building a proper RYZEN 5 system; If that's what you're looking for, don't bother. This was simply a build to see how cheap you could build a RYZEN box for TODAY...
Now onto the parts justifications...
CPU - Obviously, the RYZEN 5 1400 was the champion of this build.
CPU COOLER - The RYZEN 5 1400 comes bundled with the Wraith Stealth. With a TDP of about 90W, the cooler theoretically allows for some overclocking (with all the R5 chips being 65W units). I know of reviewers who used the stock cooler and reached 3.7GHz, but I wasn't comfortable pushing my chip that far - At 3.5GHz with stock voltage, I found my personal limit, and I didn't want to push any further until I could get both better cooling and a better power supply into this system.
EDIT: I took the CPU to 3.7GHz on stock voltage on the stock cooler. Absolutely no issues as of yet :) Updated benchmarks below.
MOTHERBOARD - Quite literally, I walked into my local computer store, looked at their B350 boards, pointed at the cheapest one, and said, "That one please" - I couldn't be happier. Yes, there are only 2 RAM slots, but that's just fine for a budget rig.
RAM - I'd have picked up a single 8GB stick of 3000/3200MHz RAM to go with this rig, allowing for a future stick to be added, but I recently built Spacebox and the Team Dark RAM in red captured my heart, so I had to get more of it. Sadly, no 8GB@3000MHz kit was available, and I opted for a 2x4GB kit at 2400MHz. I know this kit will hit 2800MHz once I loosen up the timings, so it was of little concern to me. As a recommendation though, buy a single 8GB stick at 3200MHz - you'll thank yourself.
STORAGE - Kingston 240GB SSD + WD Black 1TB HDD - There is no combo more perfect. I'd have loved to go with an ADATA XPG SX8000 M.2 drive to boot from, but I'd have been paying a lot more money for a lot less storage space. The 1TB HDD was recycled from the N.A.G.S. build, as it has all my files on-board. Still included original purchase price though.
GPU - Don't judge me for my love of RX460s ... They're such a good budget card. If the R5 lineup had integrated on-board graphics, I'd have used that. Basically, any modern card would work here, and a GTX 1060 or RX470/480 would have probably been the more logical choice, given the powerful CPU. I happened to find this card for super cheap though, so that's what I'm going with.
CASE - Another recycled part from the N.A.G.S. build, the N200 is a versatile and easy-to-work-in case. I didn't bother putting the drive cage back in after my Athlon Rebuild, so I left the Hard Drive where it was, and pretty much did the same with the SSD. It was super simple working in this case when the actual intended motherboard size was used. Still a 10/10 budget case!
PSU - I found this for sale on Kijiji for $20. Offered the guy $10, he retorted with 15, I accepted. Honestly all there is to it... Any 500+W power supply would have worked just fine, and I was looking at a Corsair CX450M, but ended off going with the Thermaltake because of price and wattage. This unit is fine for now.
Since, for some reason, people have been asking about benchmarks, here they are. I benchmarked in CPU-Z, 3DMark Fire Strike and Sky Diver, and Cinebench R15. In CPU-Z, I also benchmarked the original BIOS (2.0) at stock speeds vs latest BIOS (2.4) at stock and my overclock:
CPU-Z 2.0 BIOS - Stock Speeds Single threaded score: 1816 Multi threaded score: 8275 CPU-Z 2.4 BIOS - Stock Speeds Single threaded score: 1867 Multi threaded score: 8315 CPU-Z 2.4 BIOS - 3.5GHz OC Single threaded score: 2045 Multi threaded score: 8910 CPU-Z 2.4 BIOS - 3.7GHz OC Single threaded score: 2256 Multi threaded score: 9217 3DMark Sky Diver (3.5GHz) 15,772 Total 17,611 Graphics 9,723 Physics 18,568 Combined 3DMark Fire Strike Normal (3.5GHz) 4,917 Total 5,444 Graphics 11,730 Physics 1,894 Combined Cinebench R15 (3.7GHz) CPU: 802cb OpenGL: 94.27fps
Yah, not bad at all.
For the money, you can't go wrong. I've got mine running at a stable 3.5GHz on stock voltage using the included Wraith Spire. In gaming, it would compare to a recent Intel i5, and once you Overclock it further (given better cooling) it would more than happily match a Kaby Lake i5 in most modern games. ... That said, it destroys it in production tasks, so if you're looking for a budget workstation, this chip right here has your name written on it.
USE FAST RAM WITH THESE CHIPS! 3000MHz OR HIGHER!!
It was the cheapest RYZEN board available at the time I built my budget R5 system - That said, nothing about this board feels "budget" - It has an M.2 slot, it has a killer colour theme that's just the perfect balance of eye-catching and subdued, it has LEDs along the edge which are again perfectly subdued, and it has the PCIex16 slot as the SECOND expansion slot, instead of the first, which - - - You have no idea how useful that it!!
Only disappointments are: only 2 case fan headers aside from the CPU header (would have liked to see 3) and only 2 RAM slots (but whatever, it's enough if you plan for it).